Blogger condemned to pay $125,000 for defamation

An exiled Senegalese journalist, now residing in Montreal, has been ordered to pay the son of the president of the Republic of Senegal $125,000 for defaming him in a blog widely republished by African media outlets.

In a blog run by the well-respected French-based publication Nouvel Observateur, Souleymane Jules Diop portrayed Karim Meïssa Wade, in a series of postings that were published between July and November 2005, as a criminal who appropriated or diverted public funds, was involved in money-laundering, and resorted to threats and physical intimidation.

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Sudoku will is valid, rules court

During the Christmas holidays Fernande Aubé, while suffering from the ravages of cancer, kept herself busy playing Sudoku as she lay in a hospital bed in Hull, Quebec. The former teacher also lined several of the pages of the puzzle book with her last will and testament, with instructions that had changed the notarized will she had signed in 1991.

“Please accept my apologies with all the paperwork I have left you,” wrote Aubé, who gave the document to a nurse with instructions to pass it on to Aubé’s daughter Gina before she passed away on Christmas Eve in 2007. “I have been thinking of doing it for months but destiny was quicker than me.”

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Security company held responsible for employee’s tort

The world’s fifth-largest purveyor of armored car and security guard services was ordered to pay $782,000 to an insurance company after Quebec Superior Court held that it was liable for tort committed by one of its employees who set fire to a vacant YMCA building in downtown Montreal.

“The suit essentially rests on the delicate and controversial question surrounding the liability of the principal for the intentional fault of its employee,” noted Justice Chantal Masse in Axa Assurances inc. c. Groupe de sécurité Garda inc. Continue reading “Security company held responsible for employee’s tort”

Slapshot costs mom $44,000

A mother has been ordered to pay $44,000 in damages after his 15-year old son slapped a puck that accidently struck a nine-year old boy in the face at an outdoor rink.

In a 10-page ruling, Quebec Superior Court Justice Julien Lanctôt held Yannick Rousseau to be mostly responsible for the accident that knocked out Samuel Bonneville’s three front teeth. Samuel had to undergo more than $40,000 in dental work, and missed a month of school.

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Suicide not a workplace injury, rules tribunal

On Sunday, January 23, 2005, Detective Sergeant Denis Matteau told his wife that he had to go to the office, even though it was his day off, to prepare his testimony for a high-profile murder trial involving Michel Usereau, a former police officer turned private security firm director accused of shooting a business competitor.

Matteau, who forged over the course of a career spanning more than twenty years a reputation as a perfectionist, led the investigation in the Usereau case. It was a case that “perturbed” him. In the weeks that preceded the trial, Matteau’s manner had changed. He closed up, and concentrated on the Usereau case, day, night and weekends. He avoided family gatherings, no longer worked out, and barely slept. Continue reading “Suicide not a workplace injury, rules tribunal”

Alimony rights for common-law spouses at stake in wealthy couple’s battle

A legal battle pitting a Brazilian aspiring model against a wealthy Montreal businessman may have all the ingredients of a riveting soap opera but at stake lies a constitutional challenge that strikes at the heart over the financial duties of common-law partners in Quebec.

The 35-year-old woman, who mothered three of the man’s children, is challenging the law that mandates spousal payments for couples who only have been legally married. Before Quebec Superior Court, she is seeking $56,000 in alimony and a share of his wealth. The identities of the protagonists are protected by the court, as is the case in Quebec when family law cases involve children. Continue reading “Alimony rights for common-law spouses at stake in wealthy couple’s battle”